Advertisement

BCCI sells the ground rights for the India-West Indies matches without a tender

Anurag Thakur
Anurag Thakur. (Photo by Pradeep Gaur/Mint via Getty Images)

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has reportedly drawn the attention of the Lodha Committee after it sold the ground rights for the upcoming India-West Indies matches without a stipulated tender process.

The ground rights for the two T20Is between India and the West Indies which will be played in Florida (USA) have been sold to Chennai-based Tech Front, a highly reputed name in the on-grounding stadia cricket rights, without a tender process last week.

Advertisement

The BCCI had mentioned the base price for the broadcast rights for these two matches on its website. However, there was no declaration was made by the apex board in relation to the ground rights deal. Therefore, this suggests that it’s not been a ‘transparent deal’ as recommended by the Supreme Court-appointed Lodha committee.

Post the July 18 Supreme Court order, which mandates ‘transparency’ in all financial dealings of the BCCI, it was clear that the cricket board would have to bring out a tender to sell any potential properties in future.

Also, read – Ian Bell likely to come back for subcontinent tour

Incidentally, this news has come at a time when the BCCI has written a letter to Sony Pictures Network India (SPNI) where it categorically stated that it needs to “take part in a tender process” to retain the rights of the much-valued Indian Premier League (IPL) to make sure that the entire deal is handled in a transparent way. SNPI has a 10-year rights deal for the IPL will end with the 2017 season.

On Tuesday (August 23), the BCCI had written to SPNI asking it to participate in the tender process and was told in return that it was violating the terms of the contract signed in 2010.

Informed sources told TOI that while BCCI has indeed sent the letter to SPNI, asking it to participate in the tender process, “SPNI is clear that it is a blatant violation of the existing IPL contract”. This clause, it is further learnt, was inserted in the contract between BCCI and Sony when the latter took the cricket board to court in 2010, giving way to the facilitation fee controversy – also involving the World Sports Group, Singapore -that continues to be under the investigation of the Enforcement Directorate.

Advertisement